THE MUSIC BOX
June 19, 2022 Fathers Day
Jubal Joslyn, tenor
Melinda Coffey Armstead, piano & organ
Prelude: New Words . . . Maury Yeston
Tell My Father . . . J. Murphy/F. Wildhorn
What You’d Call a Dream . . . Craig Carnelia
Soliloquy . . . Rodgers & Hammerstein
Offertory: The Lord’s Prayer . . . Albert Hay Malotte
Postlude: Fugue in D, WTC I . . . J. S. Bach
My dad was born in Texas. He timed it perfectly, so that he would meet my mother and shortly after that have me. (And my brother and sister, but never mind that.) We had a secret understanding, whereby he would smile and chuckle at me, and I would straighten up and fly right. I think this puzzled my mother, who found short, crisp words better suited her style of behavior modification.
Anyway, one humid summer day, Dad was cutting the grass with one of those manual push lawn mowers. That meant he had to rake the cuttings into a pile afterwards. You cannot possibly guess what a five-year-old tomgirl daughter did with that pile of grass. Ah, rats, you guessed it. When his back was turned I ran full tilt and jumped into it with a scream, destroying his tidy mound of cut grass. Vandalism? For sure. Deserving of a swift rebuke? Definitely. But he just looked at me and smiled. He knew it would itch like crazy, no doubt because he had done the same thing when he was a boy. (He called me “Picky,” for reasons I prefer to think of as unknown.)
I often think of his gentle presence, of his strength and tenderness, and of his easy smile and laugh. I think of his generosity to everyone, meaning everyone. And when I fall down and life seems broken, I remember how he could fix things, and he is here with me again, and I am lifted up.